Securing consecutive T20I series victories against Australia and South Africa has marked a remarkable achievement for a young and relatively inexperienced Indian cricket team. Now, with the return of heavyweights Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, India aims to extend their winning streak against a spirited Afghanistan side. The upcoming series promises high-octane action as both teams look to finalize their squad compositions in the build-up to the T20 World Cup, just six months away.
|Afghanistan tour of India, 2024
|Inderjit Singh Bindra Stadium/ Mohali Stadium (The Punjab Cricket Association Ajitgarh), Sahibzada Ajit Singh Nagar, India
|Date and Time
|11 January 2024, 19:00 IST
- India aims to kickstart the New Year with a T20I victory, emphasizing the importance of not underestimating Afghanistan in this format.
- The addition of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma adds valuable experience to the youthful Indian squad, which recently secured T20I series victories against Australia at home and South Africa away.
- Afghanistan enters the series at full strength, with the notable absence of Rashid Khan, who is recovering from a minor back injury.
- In head-to-head encounters, India has asserted dominance over Afghanistan, winning four out of their five recent matches.
Table of content
The absence of key players has not dampened the spirit of Team India, as they welcome back the experienced duo of Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. Sanju Samson also returns, adding depth to the squad. With an array of all-rounders including Shivam Dube, Washington Sundar, and Axar Patel, India boasts a versatile lineup.
The spin duo of Ravi Bishnoi and Kuldeep Yadav poses a significant threat to the Afghan batsmen, while the pace trio of Arshdeep Singh, Avesh Khan, and Mukesh Kumar aims to exploit early swing and seam movement. India enters the series with a well-rounded team, determined to secure another bilateral T20I series victory on home soil.
Missing Players: Surya Kumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Ruturaj Gaikwad (due to injuries)
Despite the daunting challenge of facing a formidable Indian team in their home conditions, Afghanistan arrives with a strong T20I squad. Openers Rahmanullah Gurbaz and Hazratullah Zazai form a robust partnership, while captain Ibrahim Zadran aims to stabilize the innings if an early wicket falls. However, the middle order, comprising Najibullah Zadran, Mohammad Nabi, Azmatullah Omarzai, and Karim Janat, needs to find consistency.
Bowling has traditionally been Afghanistan’s strength. Fazalhaq Farooqi and Naveen ul Haq showcased effectiveness in the powerplay against UAE. With the return of Mujeeb ur Rahman, the bowling attack gains additional firepower. All-rounders Karim Janat and Azmatullah Omarzai provide medium-pace options, complemented by the spin duo of Qais Ahmad and Mohammad Nabi.
Captaincy Challenge: Ibrahim Zadran, a young and relatively untested captain, leads the Afghan side.
Probable Playing XI
|Afghanistan Predicted Playing XI
|India Predicted Playing XI
|Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk)
|Yashasvi Jaiswal/Shubman Gill
|Ibrahim Zadran (capt)
|Mujeeb Ur Rahman
|Fazal Haq Farooqi
|Noor Ahmad/Qais Ahmad
India VS Afghanistan Chance of Winning
Who Will Win?
The upcoming T20 clash between India and Afghanistan at the Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium, Mohali, Chandigarh, is expected to witness a fair battle between bat and ball. The pitch offers a favorable environment for pace bowlers initially, providing both bounce and pace.
Batsmen, however, have proven that with the right approach, they can accumulate runs effectively. The evening game introduces the challenge of dew, affecting the grip for bowlers, especially with the wet ball. Low floodlights add an additional layer of complexity for fielders, emphasizing the need for unwavering focus.
India vs Afghanistan head-to-head stats
|Total Matches Played
|India vs Afghanistan
The Punjab Cricket Association IS Bindra Stadium has been a fortress for the home team, securing victories in three out of the four T20I matches played here.
However, a notable exception occurred in the recent encounter against Australia in September 2022, where the visitors successfully chased down a substantial target of 210, winning by four wickets.
The venue’s history suggests that the toss could play a crucial role, with teams batting second claiming victory on four occasions. Given this trend, Team India may opt to bowl first if they win the toss.
Toss: To Bowl
Considering the historical data at this venue, winning the toss could be a significant advantage. The team batting second has emerged victorious four times, including a remarkable chase of 211 runs by Australia against India. Therefore, if Team India wins the toss, they might opt to put Afghanistan in to bat first.
IND vs AFG Winning Prediction:
Despite Afghanistan’s commendable performance in the recent World Cup, India remains a formidable force, particularly on home turf. The familiarity with local conditions and the support of the home crowd make India the favorites in this encounter.
Prediction: India Will Win
As the two teams prepare to face off, our prediction leans towards India emerging victorious in this T20 clash against Afghanistan.